Sequels they may both be, but they managed to take what was great about the first film and expand upon it whilst at the same time taking it in a new direction. If you haven't seen the first film, you should. Really, it's great, and you can pick it up on DVD for around £5 or so. It tells the story of Flint Lockwood, a bumbling inventor who makes such amazing things as spray on shoes (that you can't take off), Hair Unbalder, and a monkey thought translator (whose only word throughout the first film is 'Steve!', his name). His latest invention is able to turn water into food, and as well as making him famous, it almost destroys the world.
I won't say anymore. If you've seen it, you know what happens, and if you don't, you really should.
The second film picks up at the end of the first, where he has just disabled his invention, and another inventor (Flint's childhood idol) comes in to help with the clean-up. Suffice to say, he has his own agenda, and ultimately it's up to Flint and his friends to save the day. This time around, the food has mutated into food based animals, some of my favourites being the cheese spider (a giant beef burger that spins webs made of cheese) and the tacodile (a large crocodile like animal made of tacos with red chillies for legs). There is also one of the cutest little creatures seen on film in a while, Berry the talking strawberry, with big soppy eyes and little stumpy legs. My daughter immediately announced that she would like one, so if they come out as toys for Christmas, I'm sure they'll clean up.
At the end of the day, bad guys get beaten, the good guys are all friends again, new friends are made and there's a lot about not judging something by what it looks like. There are also some great lines, some for the children ('There's a leek in the boat' - a walking leek on the deck, a recurring gag that's somehow funny every time), and ones for the grownups ('She wants you to put your hands on her buns'). Everyone in the cinema was laughing all the way through, not just me!
One point to note, my daughter and I went to see this film in 3D, purely for the time it was on (2D was at 1030 or 1750, both inconvenient for us). It added little, if anything to the film, and relied on unnecessary gimmicks such as fishing rods coming out of the screen at you. Unless you're a huge fan of 3D, I would recommend seeing it in 2D and saving yourself a few pounds.
Overall, a great movie, and a worthy sequel. 8/10